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No matter our age or abilities we want to live in homes that enable us to stay independent and allow us to keep in contact with our friends and family. Those of us who need some extra help and support to remain independent generally want to stay in our own homes rather than being moved into a caring facility. Sometimes, to help us remain independent we need to make changes to our homes so we can continue to be safe, for our needs to be met and so that everything we need is easily accessible. Knowing that we will not have to move home for a few more years provides us with a level of comfort, removing a great deal of stress from our future planning.
If you are renting, you may feel worried about asking the property owner about making changes to their house or flat. If you are a home owner or a landlord or landlady you might worry that some changes may lower the appeal of your property which may make it harder to sell on in the future. It is important to remember that if you are renting out your property it is your duty to provide a safe home to your tenants. A tenant who is happy and comfortable in your property is more likely to rent for a longer period and treat your property with care as they will want to stay for longer.
In the UK, the number of people aged 65 is rising by around 2% a year and those who are 80 and older are the fastest-growing age group as we are living longer, healthier lives. However, the amount of homes available to elderly people, especially elderly disabled people, in the UK does not yet reflect this change in population, as such there is a gap in the market of homes which can safely and comfortably house this important group. If we make changes to our houses which would appeal to an older generation we are creating more attractive buildings for this growing population.
Bathrooms are one of the most expensive and labour intensive rooms to modify. This is why they’re often the last room to be updated and can go decades without any changes. Yet, bathrooms should be the most important area of a home to be addressed first when someone’s mobility is affected. A lot of the changes in your bathroom can be beneficial for people of all ages and abilities and many changes can be removed easily if you wish. When it comes to bathrooms, people want a clean, safe and easily accessible bathroom. I’ve listed some changes which can be easily made to help you have better accessibility to your bathroom.
What you can do:
- Change round or tulip shaped door knobs for lever style door handles, they are easier to grip to open and close doors
- Add D style drawer pulls to cabinet doors and drawers, they are easier to pull and grip on for children and adults.
- Add an adjustable shower head mount by adding a vertical slide bar with connector for the shower head
What UDOOR can do for you:
- Add an alternative entrance to your bath with lower step-in level. UDOOR specialise in installing bathtub doors. The UDOOR bathtub door lowers the threshold of your bath considerably (if you are having trouble getting in and out of your bath you might want to consider a UDOOR bathtub door)
- Fit grab bars around the bath or shower, these are great if you get tired while standing or need help getting up
- Add non-slip coating to your bathtub to provide better grip, non-slip mats can sometimes have mould build up if they are not allowed to dry thoroughly
- Provide you with a bath board which can provide seating under the shower head if you have fatigue while standing
Whether you own your home or not, the bathrooms should be planned for accessibility of all family members and guests who may use it. You can help extend the usefulness of your bathroom by making some small changes. Simple accessories such as grab bars, better shaped handles and anti-slip coating to the bath will greatly help anyone who isn’t as stead on their feet as they use to be. Moreover, as the ageing population increases the changes we make to our homes to benefit older people will have a good resale value.
More importantly, it is not just the homes themselves that are important for older people to maintain our independence but living in a local environment with shops and a friendly community is just as important. Moving into a care home often means moving away from friends, family and a local area which is familiar. At an older age, a sudden change in location could be quite detrimental. This is why it is vitally important for us to plan for our old age and continue to keep our homes a safe place for us to live for as long as possible.
Thanks to the UDOOR bathtub door, you do not have to give up the pleasures of a relaxing bathe, as the waterproof door provides a secure solution. Since the tub door can be installed easily in most bathtubs, no expensive bathroom conversion is needed.
It can be installed quickly, so you can enjoy the comfort of your new, safe walk-in bathtub, typically right from the very next day. With appropriate decisions you can prepare for the future and prevent accidents, so bathing can be safe for every member of the family.